Caritas in Veritate. Riflessioni di un tecnico

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The author comments on the recent encyclical by H. H. Benedict XVI, Caritas in veritate, which ideally follows the Populorum progressio by Paul VI. He adopts a representation of the social space allowing for an appealing illustration of Paul VI’s concept of the progress of all Man for all Mankind. His interpretation of Benedict XVI's contribution is based upon the two complementary principles of gratuitousness and subsidiarity. From the latter, the author deduces the decentralisation of the economy, the market and the contractual form of firms, and a distinction between the "authentic profit" – an ideal measure of innovative contributions to the common good – and other forms of enrichment and speculation. Other current topics discussed in the encyclical are considered in the light of the two abovementioned principles, in order to define conditions under which the activities of firms can contribute to the common good.